Possessing rugged terrain and massive scale, Ai Chi Lang has long been considered a wall protecting Thang Long citadel from invasions from northern countries in Vietnam. Until now, many tourists visit Lang Son to explore and experience the preserved relic.
1. Where is Ai Chi Lang?
The Ai Chi Lang relic area is currently located in Chi Lang district, Lang Son province, Vietnam. This place has preserved many heroic historical achievements. Also is a place to witness the extremely resilient struggle of our nation throughout the process of protecting and building our beloved homeland.
2. How is Ai Chi Lang unique?
With a favorable geographical location, this relic was first built during the Ngo Quyen period. Later, the citadel of the pass during the Le Trung Hung period was upgraded and developed into a system of solid walls, moats, caves, underground tunnels… These works even exerted special effects. During peaceful times like the present, the protection and control of the Vietnam-China border area, where crucial military weapons are stored, are essential.
The Ai Chi Lang relic site makes visitors who visit for the first time feel extremely majestic and clearly feel patriotism. Especially the determination of the Vietnamese people in the war for independence. In the past, Ai Chi Lang was a gate in Khau On town. And now it has been expanded to 20 km long and 3 km wide, connecting Huu Lung and Chi Lang Lang Son. Therefore, when traveling to this monument, visitors can follow National Highway 1A, only about 150 km from the capital.
3. Historical significance of Ai Chi Lang
The Ai Chi Lang is blessed by nature with a terrain. It is extremely suitable for deploying troops in battle formation as it is flanked by high rocky mountains. Also surrounded by dense forests. The Ai Chi Lang became a wall, blocking all attempts to invade the ancient Thang Long citadel from the Northern army.
The history of the Chi Lang area is associated with many battles of heroic heroes. Such as Tran Quoc Tuan, Ly Thuong Kiet, Hoang Dai Hue, etc. From the 10th to the 11th century, the Ai Chi Lang was the place to witness The Song army failed miserably. By the 13th century, the invasion of the Mongol army was defeated three times in this same area.
By the 15th century, Chi Lang gate once again became the place marking a brilliant turning point in history thanks to the victory on October 10, 1427. The Northern enemy felt scared every time they passed through Chi Lang as the victory in the war against them was achieved multiple times.
When the enemy army entered the gate, wherever they went, they encountered deep rivers, dense forests, and high, steep rocky mountains. When we arrived at Quy Mon Quan, our troops ambushed both sides and were able to destroy the majority of the enemy. This is suitable terrain for guerrilla warfare. With a length of nearly 20 km, Chi Lang Pass was certified as a national historical site in 1962.
4. When is the best time to travel to Ai Chi Lang?
Tourists can visit Lang Son and Ai Chi Lang in any season of the year. Because each season has its own interesting beauty. Therefore, everyone can freely choose a trip time that suits their personal preferences.
If you can visit Lang Son in the winter, you will even have the opportunity to admire the white snow in the Chi Lang region. In addition, if you want to participate in the unique festivals of the people here. Such as Tam Thanh pagoda festival, Ky Lua fireworks festival, and Chi Lang in January – spring.
5. How to get to Ai Chi Lang
- Lang Son is about 180 km northeast of Hanoi and has a quite convenient transportation network. Therefore, visitors can visit this historical site in 3 ways:
- Traveling by bus: You can go to Gia Lam or My Dinh bus station to catch the bus to Lang Son. The distance is about 120 km and takes about 2.5 hours to get there.
- Travel by train: Tourists can choose the Lang Son – Dong Dang trip, departing from 6:00 a.m. or 9:45 a.m. daily.
- Traveling by private vehicle: If you are a backpacker who wants to go to Ai Chi Lang. Then go along Hanoi, Bac Ninh, Bac Giang, Lang Son or follow Highway 5 and then go to Road 1A to get there.
6. Exploring to Ai Chi Lang
The Ai Chi Lang is a small valley located between two high mountains, Bao Dai Mountain and Cai Kinh Mountain. The Thuong River curves and flows through the valley, creating a poetic landscape, with clear flowing water in all four seasons. Therefore, this place is truly a beautiful and majestic picture, attracting tourists to visit.
6.1. Cai Kinh Mountains
Cai Kinh mountain range, also known as Mo Nhai mountain, is located to the west of Ai Chi Lang. The mountain takes its name from Hoang Dinh Kinh (Cai Kinh), the leader of the Tay ethnic group, who led the army against the French colonialists during their invasion of Lang Son. With the achievements achieved as well as the extraordinary qualities of loyalty, the people of all ethnic groups in the region named the mountain after this hero.
6.2. Ma Yen Mountain
Ma Yen Mountain is located in the southeast of Ai Chi Lang, shaped like a horse with a saddle on its back. Therefore, the people here named the mountain Ma Yen, witnessing the uprising of the Nung and Tay ethnic brothers from the previous barbaric rule. They formed an army and trained war horses to fight against the Northern invaders. The most heroic feat performed on this mountain range must be next to the beheading of General Liu Sheng of Ming Dynasty China.
6.3 Quy Mon Quan (Devil face gate)
The Ai Chi Lang has 2 gates: the North is Quy Mon Quan, the South is Luy Ngo The. This Quy Mon Quan relic site is only about 100 m from the Ai Chi Lang. At night, this area earns its name Devil’s Gate or Devil’s Face Mountain due to the hollows in the walls forming a shape that closely resembles a strange human face, creating an extremely frightening appearance. However, local people do not consider this a symbol of cruelty. But often consider these mountains as guardian angels, protecting the life of the village.
7. Accommodation in Ai Chi Lang
Currently, Lang Son tourism has been strongly invested and developed. Therefore, when visiting here, you will have many options for hotel and motel services. Below are some ideal hotels in Lang Son, that you can refer them:
- Ai Chi Lang Hotel: No. 10, Tran Phu Street, Chi Lang Town.
- Tuyet Mai Guesthouse: No. 12, Tran Phu Street, Chi Lang Town
- Thanh Binh Homestay: No. 10, Ly Thuong Kiet Street, Chi Lang Town
- Ban Lang Homestay: Ban Lang village, Mai Sao commune, Chi Lang district.
- Homestay Ban Quan: Quan village, Chi Lang commune, Chi Lang district
8. Specialties in Ai Chi Lang
Lang Son cuisine is an indispensable part of a trip to explore this frontier land. With dishes rich in mountain and forest flavors, you will have the opportunity to enjoy the unique features of Lang’s culinary culture when visiting Ai Chi Lang.
- Chi Lang custard apple: Is one of the most famous specialties of this land. Na Chi Lang has a sweet, delicious taste, grown on limestone slopes. Chi Lang custard apple season starts from June to August.
- Hill chicken: The chicken raised naturally on the hills and mountains of Chi Lang hill has firm and delicious meat. People often process Chi Lang hill chicken into various dishes such as grilled chicken, boiled chicken, and roasted chicken.
- Ky Cung river fish hotpot: When mentioning the typical dishes of this land, you cannot ignore Ky Cung river fish hotpot. The fish has firm, sweet meat, cooked in a hot pot with vegetables. Such as chayote, mushrooms… creating a delicious, attractive flavor.
- Lam rice (Bamboo tube rice): This is a rustic dish of ethnic minorities in Chi Lang, cooked in bamboo tubes with sticky rice, banana leaves… with a delicious flavor right from the first bite.
- Bitter bamboo shoots: A specialty dish of the Northern mountains. Chi Lang bitter bamboo shoots have a characteristic bitter taste, often processed into dishes. Such as stir-fried bitter bamboo shoots with garlic, bitter bamboo shoots cooked with bones, etc.
- Cassava sweet soup: A rustic dish, effective cooling. Chi Lang cassava has a delicious, nutty taste, often cooked with rock sugar or honey.
- Chi Lang peanut candy: Chi Lang peanut candy has a sweet, fatty taste, made from peanuts, sugar, and malt, and will be a unique gift that this land gives you.
9. Some important notes when traveling to Ai Chi Lang
In order to have a fun and memorable visit to Ai Chi Lang, you need to keep in mind a few things:
- Prepare appropriate clothing and tools: Chi Lang Pass is located in the northern high mountains. It’s a temperate climate, divided into 4 distinct seasons. However, you also need to be careful to prepare clothes and tools suitable for the weather. If you visit in the spring, you should bring a thin coat, hat, hat, umbrella… to avoid getting cold. In the fall, thick coats, long-sleeved shirts… will be the appropriate choice to avoid catching a cold. Don’t forget to bring sports shoes or climbing shoes to easily move around in the pass.
- Prepare good health: Chi Lang Pass has dangerous terrain, you need to prepare good health to visit every
- Learn about the history of Ai Chi Lang: Before visiting, don’t forget to take the time to learn about the history of the Ai Chi Lang. This will help you better understand the historical significance as well as have more interesting experiences throughout the journey.
- Comply with the regulations of the relic site: Do not arbitrarily climb or break tree branches, maintain general hygiene. And do not litter indiscriminately to protect the environment.
It’s worth a visit Ai Chi Lang
If you are a history lover and passionate about exploring natural wonders, then you definitely will not want to miss the opportunity to explore Ai Chi Lang.
In order to make your trip in Vietnam more smooth and complete, immediately contact Origin Vietnam – a professional tour organizer and operator. With a team of enthusiastic and dedicated consultants and guides, we will take you on a private Lang Son tour to discover Ai Chi Lang with unforgettable experiences. There are still many famous places in Lang Son waiting for you to explore. Quickly book a tour and set out with your friends to visit this beautiful land right away!